- outwardly appearing as such; professed; pretended: an ostensible cheerfulness concealing sadness.
- apparent, evident, or conspicuous: the ostensible truth of their theories.
Origin of ostensible
Examples from the Web for ostensible
And why would its ostensible spokesperson refuse to answer yes/no questions about them?How Canadian Oilmen Pinkwash the Keystone Pipeline
December 28, 2014
A trove of Bush-era emails that had been quote-unquote-lost resurfaced in 2009, the victim of an ostensible act of mislabeling.Paging Rose Mary Woods: Obama’s Unbelievable Missing IRS Emails
June 18, 2014
The ostensible middle-ground approach, to “provide weapons an training” to the Ukrainians got about 25 perent of the vote.Europe, Stunned by Reckless Russia, Mistrusts Feckless Ukrainian Leaders
March 24, 2014
Oblivious self-entitlement is now so widespread and suitable for mockery that the ostensible cure has begun to follow in its wake.Our Bad Romance Obsession Is the Ultimate First World Problem
January 2, 2014
It would seem that for all of its ostensible lack of vim and vigor, Israel Media Watch is a very effective organization.The Dubious Successes of Israel's Media Watch
September 11, 2013
An ostensible pretext is never wanting to those who are resolved on war.Tales And Novels, Volume 5 (of 10)
Its ostensible purpose was to complain of the picture postcards.Where Angels Fear to Tread
E. M. Forster
The ostensible cause of her removal was to make room for other prisoners.Fox's Book of Martyrs
Should not you write him an ostensible letter on the subject?Memoirs of the Courts and Cabinets of George the Third
The Duke of Buckingham and Chandos
Not that he failed to secure himself by some ostensible precautions.
- apparent; seeming
Word Origin and History for ostensible
1762, "capable of being shown, presentable," from French ostensible, from Latin ostens-, past participle stem of ostendere "to show, expose to view; to stretch out, spread before; exhibit, display," from ob "in front of" (see ob-) + tendere "to stretch" (see tenet). Meaning "apparent, professed" is from 1771.